Quizzes as Content Marketing: The Next Trend?

quizzes in content marketing

Content marketing is about to enter a brave new world — one that focuses more on interactivity than text-dense white papers. Although content marketing has become more visual and more interesting, it’s remained relatively static. This static state has kept users, viewers and readers from engaging with the content on a deeper level. In an effort to boost that engagement, brands, like Big Stock Photo are turning their attention towards more interactive forms of content, including apps, interactive white papers, calculators and quizzes.

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“Quizzes and other interactive media are definitely on the rise in content marketing. First it was infographics, but they quickly became over saturated. As more and more sites start producing high quality content, publishers will need to stand out above the rest and these sorts of interactive pages are hot right now,” says Oleg Korneitchouk, EVP, Director of Digital Marketing & Development at SmartSites.com.

While quizzes have become hot lately, largely due to sites like BuzzFeed creating engaging and addictive (though superficial) personality tests, they actually provide brands and marketers with a great opportunity to expand their content marketing strategy.

Quizzes trigger personal curiosity.

“Quizzes work well because they trigger personal curiosity, they are fun to take, well designed and, most importantly, highly shareable. At the end of any of these quizzes, there is an opportunity to share the outcome on your social media feeds, which is how BuzzFeed quizzes became known to me in the first place,” Jerry Rackley, Chief Analyst at Demand Metric Research Corporation, explains. “Quizzes like this, designed using these parameters, create a lot of engagement and awareness.”

Of course, quizzes, like any other form of social of content marketing, need to be on point with your brand. A fun “What dog breed are you?” quiz could be a cute idea for an animal shelter or a veterinarian office. If that same quiz is shared by a brand completely outside the pet industry, though, their audience would be confused and annoyed.

Quizzes need to offer your users value.

On the consumer side, this value can come in the form of interesting information. “Sites like BuzzFeed are currently seeing a lot of attention because of their many quick and easy quizzes, but that fad will soon fade and lose its luster,” Adam Hansen, Communications Strategist at MM Identity Lab explains. “By peppering quiz questions in with content that has enough substance to stand alone, you can create a great user experience and provide value to readers. For instance, we recently wrote a blog post about color psychology and included a short challenge that users found very interesting. It has become one of our most popular pieces of content.”

It can also come in the form of an easier, more customized buying experience. Abbigail Christensen, Account Coordinator at Fletcher PR, recently used this approach for a retail client with a Millennial consumer base. “It’s been proven time and again that this demo pours money into their experiences. They want to support and engage with businesses that enhance their experiences rather than sell them a product. I recently helped create a quiz that asked consumers about their lifestyle and fashion preferences to determine their style personality. We kept it short and used images instead of text. We then used their style personality to tailor their shopping experience. This personalized approach takes the sales pitch out of the equation in their eyes.”

Quizzes can (and should) offer your brand value.

“Real quizzes can actually serve as a customer-based research and development, especially if your company offers a service or a product. You can generate quizzes that will help your own customers provide valuable feedback for product development or service strategy,” suggests Alfredo A. Lopez, Social Media/Content Marketing Manager.

“These quiz results also hold a high value in their ability to inform brands about common misconceptions their audience may have,” adds Zach Murphy, Content Marketing Specialist at PB&J. “If enough people get a wrong answer, it may be time to adjust your marketing plan to more clearly communicate that point. Marketers using quizzes effectively will seek to treat them the same way teachers do: test your audience’s knowledge and adjust your communication plan accordingly.”

What do you need to consider before creating a quiz?

You’ll want to have a strategy in place before jumping into the world of quizzes. Katie Mayberry, Principal at SpyglassDigital.com, recommends taking the following steps.

  1. Think about what is interesting to your target market and what your market might know or not know.
  2. Develop questions related to your brand/industry and your target market’s knowledge of your brand/industry. Are you a DUI attorney? Develop a quiz around DUI cases regarding famous people for a way to merge pop culture and your service offerings.
  3. Be sure to tie your quiz into your overall campaign objectives. What KPIs do you want to hit – more page views, increased time on site, social shares, form fills? Have the quiz direct readers to fulfill those objectives. For instance, when the quiz is finished, invite them to share their results. Or capture their email address before they take the quiz.

What are your thoughts? Have you seen brands using quizzes as an entertaining and effective form of content marketing? Or do you think it’s a strategy that will, like infographics, be adopted quickly but suffer from oversaturation? Share your thoughts with us!